Why do you need to redirect your top landing pages?
Your top landing pages are the pages the are visited the most on your website from a Google search. When you move to a new website these pages may no longer exist resulting in lost traffic or traffic that is directed to a page that does not exist (error 404). To minimise the impact of this, it is important to redirect these old landing pages to pages that do exist on your new website.
Which version of analytics should you use?
It may be necessary to use your Universal analytics property for this process for a more comprehensive dataset while Google Analytics 4 is still fairly new. However, you should use the newer Google Analytics 4 if it has been running for long enough for you to have meaningful data. I.e. A few months.
If you don’t know what I mean by Universal analytics, check out the tutorial on setting up the new Google Analytics 4 for your website.
Top Landing Pages with Universal Analytics
- Open your Google Analytics (UA4) account.
- Behaviour > Site Content > Landing Pages.
- Using the calendar up the top right, set the time period to the last few months. (we’re trying to get a larger dataset for a more accurate representation of what landing pages are valuable).
- Show 50 rows to view your top 50 landing pages in analytics
- To export, select the export button up the top right, and select your desired format.
Top Landing Pages with Google Analytics 4
If you have enough data in Google Analytics 4 to accurately represent your best performing landing pages, you can find your websites top landing pages by going to:
- Reports > Engagement > Landing Page
- Download this report by clicking “share” in the top right, and then “download” as your desired filetype. Don’t forget to use an appropriate date range (I.e. longer than a month).
Setting up redirects for your new website
Redirecting landing pages from your old website that no longer exist, to pages on your new website that do.
Now that you have your top landing pages, you want to make sure that you don’t lose the search engine traffic that these links generate. I would suggest going through each of these links and deciding what page they best correspond to on your new website. If the URL between the landing page on your old site, and the corresponding page on your new site are different, you will need to set up a redirect so that users end up at the correct page and don’t get an error 404.
- Configuration > Search and Metadata > URL Redirects
- Select “Add Redirect” up the top right of the page.
- In the “Path” field, complete the URL that you would like to redirect from. In the “To” field, complete the URL that you would like to redirect to.
- Select save and repeat as necessary for all URL’s that need to be redirected.